Lauren A Taylor, MDiv, MPH, PhD studies governance and management of health improvement efforts within the United States and abroad. She worked briefly as a consultant for the Global Fund and Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and has since written on the institutionalization of global health, how to reform the World Health Organization, the responsibilities of health systems to address social determinants of health and the problem of dirty hands for health policymakers. In 2013, she co-authored The American Health Care Paradox with Elizabeth Bradley.
For several years, Lauren co-taught Global Health Ethics at Harvard Medical School with Sadath Sayeed. In addition to her teaching at Wagner, she teaches a course on Professional Responsibility to students NYU Stern.
She holds a Masters in Public Health from Yale and a Masters in Divinity from Harvard. Her PhD from Harvard Business School focused on organizational theory and business ethics. Lauren is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Population Health at NYU Grossman School of Medicine.
Required for MPA Health students. This introductory course is designed to familiarize students with basic concepts and ideas concerning the distribution of health and illness in society, the organization of the health care system, and the relationship of one to the other. We begin by considering the evolution of the U.S. health care system and of health policy. We then present an international perspective on the U.S. health care system with an emphasis on the Affordable Care Act, alternative government roles, current challenges and the future of the health care system. In the second part of the course, we explore divergent perspectives for analyzing health and health care: clinical, epidemiological, economic, sociological/cultural and public health. In the third part, we focus on, selected issues in HPAM: the challenge of mental health, variations in medical practice and the quality of care, health care rationing and access to care. Finally, we conclude with a discussion of how practitioners in the field of HPAM should respond to the growing awareness of the social determinants of health and the growth of the medical-industrial complex for HPAM.
Class readings cover major topics in the study of health and health care delivery: the organization and financing of health care systems; cost and access to health care; health policy challenges and the Affordable Care Act; the roles of government in health systems and policy; the epidemiology of health and medical care, economic and ethical issues related to health care rationing, the social determinants of health. Along with covering these subjects, we emphasize the value of understanding diverse disciplinary perspectives, the challenges of meeting the varied (and often conflicting) needs and motivations of health care system stakeholders, and the ways in which the United States health care system differs from those of other wealthy nations.
Traditionally, governments have the ultimate responsibility for assuring the conditions for their people to be as healthy as they can be. In this sense one of the fundamental societal goals of health services may be considered the health improvement of the population served and for which the individual government is responsible. As our understanding of the multiple determinants of health has dramatically expanded, exercising this responsibility calls for a national health policy that goes beyond planning for the personal health care system and addresses the health of communities. Broader issues of political, economic, social, institutional, educational, and environment circumstances, among others, are now seen as important determinants of health. Of particular importance is the issue of equity of access to all these resources within a country.
In the face of this added complexity, countries, especially developing countries and those in transition, face challenges from a number of global health threats. Their national health strategies may be compromised by the effects of globalization and global decision making on issues that affect health. Government leaders must not only address health problems within their borders, but those that come across their borders, whether specific diseases like HIV/AIDS, avian influenza, or the pressures of the global labour market that lead to movement of health professionals seeking better pay and working conditions from the developing to the developed world
After discussing definitions of health in international agreements and the general influences of globalization on health and health equity, the course will explore the roles and responsibilities of national health leadership, primarily Ministries of Health and governmental institutions, in assuring the health of their populations and the different strategies and variable capacities of national governments in developed, developing and countries in transition. The role of regional and local governments, professionals, civil society, communities and individuals, will also be explored.
We will then consider in some depth the role, functions and effectiveness of global organizations affecting health in the UN, NGO and business sectors as well as multilateral and bilateral donors and how they interact with each other and with national leadership. Finally we will look at emerging instruments for global health governance, how they operate and their effectiveness for promoting health action at the country level.